A brand new zero waste shop is opening in Cardiff’s Pontcanna neighbourhood which will see customers take in their own containers for the ultimate shopping experience.
Viva Organic will open its doors on Saturday, August 11 and will be introducing the city to an organic, zero-waste and sustainable food shopping experience.
Absolutely everything will be organic in the shop, which will also house a juice bar with artisan cold pressed juices, a selection of wines, as well as speciality coffees. It will also sell organic soaps and toothbrushes too.
Rod Thomas, the brains behind the shop, has two young children with dairy, gluten and soya allergies.
To help manage their children’s dietary requirements and reduce allergens, Rod and his wife Siobhan decided to shop organically and cut out food which may contain pesticides.
But having struggled to find somewhere in Cardiff where they could buy solely organic and sustainable goods, Rod was inspired to open his own one-stop organic shop in Pontcanna.
Rod explained: “We were really frustrated with the lack of organic produce on our local supermarket’s shelves and the amount of plastic it was packaged in.
“For me, organic means knowing where your food is coming from and knowing that the food that you are eating and feeding your family is from a sustainable and chemical free source.
“We know that managing your diet in this way has helped our children get the nutrients they need and manage their allergies – we now hope to pass those benefits onto our customers.
“We have sourced as much local organic produce as we possibly can. From coffee to wine, washing powder to beauty products, you will be able to buy it all here and be confident that you are buying a product which is wholly organic and isn’t harming the environment at the same time.”
Shoppers visiting the Pontcanna Street store will be able to significantly reduce their single use plastic waste by bringing their own containers along to buy a wide range of produce, from dried foods to loose fruit and vegetables.
They will weigh their empty receptacles then fill them with whatever items they are buying, weigh again and pay.
Rod left his job as a property developer to qualify as a naturopath and will be selling his cold pressed juices from the Viva Organics shop.
He is going to offer a programme of cleansing and detoxing juices which customers will be able to buy from the shop each day, or even get delivered to home or work.
Rod explained: “Many people may think that buying organic produce is more expensive, but we are going to pass on the savings we get for bulk buying onto to our customers.”
Viva Organics will also stock ethical food, free from ingredients such as palm oil, as well as Fairtrade and food that has low food miles.
Rod added: “The store will have three areas, a fresh produce area, a juice, cheese, coffee, fresh bread and kombucha (a healthy fermented tea drink, packed full of probiotics) while the back of the store will house our household items, alcohol and self-serve and pack areas with large glass containers holding grains, pastas, cereals and oils which people can buy and carry home using their own containers – reducing plastic waste and also allowing customers to buy only what they need, reducing food wastage too
“We will also be introducing lunchtime food bowls and paninis, as well as offering vegetable boxes which we will deliver to our customers. There is a lot more to come from Viva Organic, but as our shop’s namesake, we are going to go slow and let it grow organically.”
Viva Organic opens its doors at 9am on Saturday August 11 at 79 Pontcanna Street, Pontcanna, Cardiff. General opening hours are Tuesday to Friday – 8am until 6pm, Saturday – 9am until 5pm, Sunday – 11am until 4pm. It will be closed on Mondays